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Sunday, June 28, 2009

Wow, if I was a celebrity this week..

I would be staying home, wrapped in bubble wrap (unless they live in Fresno, the heat would kill them!) with paramedics standing by. They are dropping like flies! First Ed McMahon passed, followed by Farrah Fawcett, then the shocking death of Michael Jackson, and today I heard Billy Mays passed away!

I have not been a fan of Michael Jackson's since high school. Thriller was my one and old album of his. It just wasn't really my style of music most of the time. But still, I was glued to the TV, Twitter and Facebook to find out any information about what happened! As anyone who followed my Twitter stream is aware I was Tweeting out the info just like everyone else. In fact, I and others like me, almost took out Twitter all together! It was Fail Whales galore for a while there...

So, I have been thinking about why we are so obsessed with deaths like Michael Jacksons. I have come to the conclusion it's because it is a stark reminder of our own mortality. In most ways, Michael was larger then life. He lived a life that most of us can't even imagine, both the highs and the lows. But I am pretty sure, no one ever really thought he could die. Maybe he didn't even think of it, though for those children's sake I sure hope he did, and prepared for it! If he could die, then gosh, I guess I could die too! What a scary thing to think of. So we watch CNN all morning to wait for confirmation of Michael death, and we talk about it on Twitter, and all our message boards. We are fascinated, like a train wreck and we can't look away.

Worse yet, his death has given people the opportunity to say all sorts of awful evil things about him, though they may be true, don't need to be said in the comments of every news story, blog post and Twitter stream :( And that's another thing we do, though it is often said "Don't speak ill of the dead" we do. Like people feel safe to say bad things about people who are unlucky enough to have their death make the news. A good friend of my brother's passed away last year, and he was front page news for a while. The horrible things people said in comments just made me cry for his family. WTF is that about? They are dead, and your words aren't going to hurt them, but sure as heck can hurt those they left behind.

Wow, that was a long and rambling post, saying a whole lot of nothing. But I felt like I needed to say something.

2 comments:

Mrs.B said...

I think why people are dredging up the bad things in this particular case (at least it was with me) is because the media and people are all but venerating this man. Though I do not think that people should speak ill of the dead in general, I also think that it is ridiculous to have this much hype over someone who wrote and sand some good songs 20 years ago, and had, at best, questionable dealings with children (he admitted on tape that he slept regularly with young boys in his bed).

He was not a saint, and to spend so much time putting him on a pedestal now, when so many other more important things are going on in the world that are not being reported on because a man who hasn't contributed anything positive to the world in years is just wrong.

At least, that is my personal opinion. And you know what they say about those ;O)

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Sugar Jones said...

I agree that we were all shocked by the reminder of our own mortality. It was pretty bizarre watching TV and reading the words that he was gone. I still remember him from Jackson 5 and loved Off the Wall and Thriller as a kid.

As for "speaking ill of the dead"... I have to say, I was definitely in the camp of people that didn't separate the musical genius from the rest. That's just me.